Low-cost carrier Bonza’s CEO Tim Jordan resorted to taking an eight-hour rail journey to attend a meeting due to the extremely high cost of airfare in Australia.
The airline founder took to LinkedIn to share his experience, saying that he had a meeting with Sydney Airport to discuss the possibility of Bonza operating from Sydney.
Jordan shared screenshots of airfare costs from Coffs Harbour Airport (CFS) to Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport (SYD), which showed that a one-way 40-minute airfare costs about AU 1,000 ($640).
“There is some significant irony that owing to the current cost of airfares (about $1,000 round trip for about 500 km each way…) to Sydney I’m now catching a train for 8 hours each way for meetings,” Jordan wrote on LinkedIn.
“One meeting is very ironically with Sydney Airport to talk about access for Bonza at Sydney so that we can potentially bring low cost airfares to 2 million more regionally based Australians in about 16 regional locations across the country and of course nearly 6 million residents in the Sydney basin,” Jordan added.
Jordan said that the exorbitant airfares to and from Sydney is an indication that the city needs more low-cost carriers to keep the fares competitive.
In comparison, Jordan said that when Bonza commenced flights to and from Melbourne in early 2023 to regional areas like Toowoomba, Port Macquarie, Bundaberg, Rocky, Tamworth, Gladstone and Mackay, passengers saved an average of about AU 400 ($250) each on airfares, compared to the previous year when Bonza was not yet operating from Melbourne.
The CEO also called for “better utilization” of slots at SYD airport, adding that Bonza would be able to deliver the same savings to communities in Sydney, “if only we could get access to limited peak slots required for SYD aircraft basing.”